living wage

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living wage,

the hourly wage that, at a minimum, supports a standard of living above the poverty level in a given locality. It differs from the minimum wageminimum wage,
lowest wage legally permitted in an industry or in a government or other organization. The goal in establishing minimum wages has been to assure wage earners a standard of living above the lowest permitted by health and decency.
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, which often provides a less than adequate standard of livingstandard of living,
level of consumption that an individual, group, or nation has achieved. The evaluation of a standard of living is relative, depending upon the judgment of the observer as to what constitutes a high or a low scale.
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. Usually exceeding both federal and state minimum wages, the living wage of any locality is normally set by a law that requires that it be paid to a specific set of workers, often those employed by businesses that have local government contracts or that receive government economic development subsidies. The recipient of a living wage stipend is generally a full-time worker who is expected to support a family (often of four). In normal circumstances, the higher the cost of livingcost of living,
amount of money needed to buy the goods and services necessary to maintain a specified standard of living. The cost of living is closely tied to rates of inflation and deflation.
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 in a given locality, the higher the living wage. Living-wage laws are in effect in several European countries, e.g., Great Britain and Switzerland. In the United States, living-wage bills had been enacted by more than 140 cities and counties by 2007. That year Maryland became the first U.S. state to require the payment of a living wage by nearly all profit-making employers with state contracts.


See studies R. Pollin and S. Luce (2000), Z. Madjd-Sadjadi (2001), D. Neumark (2002), D. M. Figart et al. (2002) and as ed. (2004), and S. Luce (2004).

living wage

a wage adequate to permit a wage earner to live and support a family in reasonable comfort
References in periodicals archive ?
The highest share of people earning less than the living wage were found in Conwy and Powys (both 32%) and Monmouthshire (30%).
The TUC claim that some businesses can afford to pay the living wage, calculated by Centre for Research in Social Policy, but are refusing to do so - and the regional economy is suffering as a result.
Mr Miliband will promise that firms paying the Living Wage will get a year-long tax rebate of up to PS1,000 for every low-paid worker who gets a rise, if he wins the next election.
We must also challenge employers, by demanding that they pay living wages to their workers.
This means enforceable international agreements allowing workers the freedom to organize as well as putting teeth back into American labor law, it means cooperation between workers and middle-class reformers and consumers, and it means government action both on the national and international level to slow the free movement of goods produced by children or workers paid below a living wage (or not paid at all) in unhealthy conditions.
Vondracek said the South Austin Coalition will continue organizing residents around the idea of living wages, taking a specific look at the history of organized labor in black communities-which would be essential for workers in the neighborhood to gain bargaining power in the face of other retailers looking to locate in Austin.
For supporters, the great promise of living wage laws is the ability to increase dramatically the standard of living for a small number of workers, raise the social accountability of companies getting public dollars, and introduce living wages as explicit goals of local economic policy.
However, in the case of living wages, a requirement is established that will inevitably increase costs.
There are ongoing campaigns to enforce and expand existing ordinances as well as efforts to enact a living wage in another 75 cities.
Aside from novel enforcement issues (I know this lawyer who will explain to you about creating dummy companies for the contract work, leaving the rest of the business unregulated), this is basically a distinction without a difference: The living wage movement is simply a move to raise minimum wages through local action.
Hundreds of workers at the University of Virginia, overwhelmingly women and people of color, are currently being paid less than a living wage.
Despite a claim it may be treading on federal powers, the Los Angeles City Council voted tentatively Tuesday to extend its Living Wage Ordinance to the employees of contractors for major city tenants, including the airlines at LAX.